Tarleton Cemetery

Capital of Texas Hwy. South

Tarleton is a small cemetery on private land that is almost surrounded by Barton Creek Mall. Because it is on private property we could only get a couple of shots of the cemetery from the gated entrance. A sign on the gate provides a phone number for more information, but little else.

From the entrance there does not appear to be very many graves in the cemetery, but the plots lay on a small hill overlooking the entrance, which may hide some other resting places out of view.

During our visit there was a steady stream of cars pulling into the entrance drive that snakes around the cemetery into Barton Creek Mall. Just 30 feet from the gate cars sped by along Capital of Texas Highway. The constant noise and motion gave little indication that anyone could achieve any sort of rest here, but then this cemetery was first used long before the larger hill to the north east became one of Austin's major shopping areas.

Entrance sign
This sign on the gate at the entrance makes it clear that this remains private property. (Photo by Austin Explorer)
Looking in
A view slightly up hill from the gate shows only a few plots. (Photo by Austin Explorer)
A closer look at one of the sites yields the only family name we could detect, Hamilton. Howard appears to have served in the US Army. (Photo by Austin Explorer)
Log Entries

No logs have been entered for this location.

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Bryan Woolley, Larry Bleiberg, Leon Unruh, Jean Simmons, Kathryn Straach, Tom Simmons, Bob Bersano
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The compilation reaffirms our fascination with cemeteries and their status as tourist attractions. People visit cemeteries in large numbers. Evidence of crowd control abounds from signs directing traffic to the grave marker of President Clinton’s mother in Hope, Arkansas, and the large steel cage protecting the tombstone of Billy the Kid at Fort Sumner, New Mexico, to the monument in New Orleans made famous by the movie Easy Rider and Bonnie Parker’s coveted headstone in Dallas, relocated to prevent theft.

The stories also demonstrate that the reasons people flock to cemeteries are as varied as the people interred there. Cemeteries hold some of the most interesting sculpture and folk art in our region. Unusual graves include the Sturrock Cemetery in Tyler County, Texas, started when the family arrived from Scotland in the 1830s. The dozen sandstone crypts are said to resemble the style of the family’s houses in Scotland. The graves at the Alabama-Coushatta Indian Reservation in Polk County, Texas, are adorned with decorations such as sea shells, stones, skillets, and teddy bears.

New Orleans cemeteries are a tourist industry by themselves, featured in movies and Anne Rice novels. The oldest standing cemetery is St. Louis No. 1, on the edge of the French Quarter. The most famous grave here belongs to Marie Laveau, the voodoo queen. Louisiana’s French and Cajun cultures come alive in its cemeteries and many plantations, such as Afton Villa and Rosedown, contain cemeteries.

Cemeteries hold fascination for history buffs and family genealogists, and this book is a valuable guide for both. It provides information about the more well-known gravesites, such as Sam Houston’s at Huntsville’s Oakwood Cemetery, but also the less well-known locations. Two graves in unassuming cemeteries are the final resting places of two of the greatest blues artists of all time: “Blind” Lemon Jefferson in Wortham, Texas, and Huddie “Leadbelly” Ledbetter in Mooringsport, Louisiana. Do you know where Hoss Cartwright is buried? The authors of this handy guidebook do.

This book will also illuminate the history behind the sites and the people who lie buried there, as well as provide information on nearby places to stay. It’s the ideal book for the amateur genealogist and weekend historian.